Mass shooting at local Texas church

No one would have ever expected that a church service on a typical Sunday morning would soon turn into the deadliest mass shooting in Texas history. When 26-year-old Devin Kelley opened fire in the First Baptist Church on Nov. 5, 26 people ranging from ages 1 to 77 were killed; the suspect began shooting outside the church across the street and proceeded inside, still shooting. Kelley then fled the scene, police chasing after him. The chase soon ended after the suspect crashed his vehicle eight miles from the church and shot himself. After many interviews and research, it is known that Kelley was a violent, distressed person who often threatened to inflict harm on others. President Donald Trump soon addressed the mass shooting and his thoughts.

“This is a mental health problem at the highest level,” Trump said.

According to former wife of Kelley, Tessa Brennaman, she had always lived in constant fear with him.

“He just had a lot of demons or hatred inside of him,” Brennaman said.

Kelley was known to have had conflict with his mother-in-law, who belonged to the church, and may have contributed to the motive. A week later, the church was emptied and turned into a memorial painted white, floor to ceiling, with a chair containing a rose next to each victim’s names who lost their lives the previous week. Among the victims was an unborn child, replaced with a single pink rose in the middle of the rest. At the front of the church, laid a poster containing the scripture that was meant to be read the previous Sunday.

“Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him and praise His name. For Yahwey is good, and His love is eternal; His faithfulness endures through all generations,” Psalm 100:5.

During this service, recordings of some of the victim’s voices reading scriptures or praying, played in the background. Family members and friends mourned together in the transformed church.

“We have the freedom to choose, and rather than choose darkness, as this one young man did that day, I say we choose light,” Pastor Pomeroy said.